Leopold Center for Sustainable Agriculture

The Leopold Center for Sustainable Agriculture at Iowa State University was created in 1987 as part of the Iowa Groundwater Protection Act. The goals of the Center have been to identify and develop new ways to farm profitably while conserving natural resources as well as reducing negative environmental and social impacts. 

The Center is named for Aldo Leopold (1887-1948), a native of Burlington, Iowa, known internationally as a conservationist, ecologist, and educator. He saw the need for development of a land ethic, outlined in his 1949 book of essays, A Sand County Almanac.

Mark Rasmussen is the Leopold Center director.  A 17-member Advisory Board advises the director on policies, budget and program review.

 Completed Grants

Leopold Center News

January 19, 2018

Dear Former Leopold Center Grant Awardees,

The Leopold Center is hosting a PI Town Hall meeting to discuss future research area priorities as part of the effort to rebuild and re-imagine the Center.

We hope you can join us between 1 to 3 p.m. Jan. 31 in Room 0013 Curtiss Hall.

Join from a PC, Mac, iPad, iPhone or Android device:


January 3, 2018

All of the Leopold Center’s publications, reports and papers are on file at the Iowa State University Library. Electronic versions are available through its Digital Repository and are fully searchable by entry search terms in the upper left hand corner. If you have additional questions, please contact center Director Mark Rasmussen.


January 3, 2018

Mark Rasmussen, Leopold Center director, can answer questions about the manual and submissions.


November 30, 2017

The Leopold Center for Sustainable Agriculture Advisory Board meeting will be held Wednesday, December 6, 2017, in Room 142, Curtiss Hall, on the Iowa State University campus in Ames. After coffee at 8:30 a.m., the meeting will be called to order at 9 a.m. and adjourn at 11:30 a.m. See the link for the full agenda: LC Advisory Board December 2017 meeting.pdf


November 1, 2017

AMES, Iowa — Calmar, in northeast Iowa, will be the site of the last listening session to help guide the future of Iowa State University’s Leopold Center for Sustainable Agriculture.

The listening session, which is free and open to the public, will begin at 5:30 p.m. Nov. 15 in the Wilder Rooms 104-105 on the campus of Northeast Iowa Community College at 1625 Hwy 150 South in Calmar.

If you cannot attend a listening session, please provide comments through the online feedback form.


Of Interest

Listening Sessions

During the fall of 2017, the Leopold Center Visioning Task Force held six listening sessions across the state to hear ideas for future goals and direction for the Center. If you were unable to attend a listening session, please provide comments through the online feedback form.